Baby talk

Friday, August 13, 2010

Question

My girlfriend went into menopause unexpectedly at 31, when a simple (botched) surgery ended in her waking up with a complete hysterectomy.

She is the only daughter, and her brother never had children of his own because he married a woman who already had five.

Both she and her parents really wanted her to have children of her own. When she and I met, we agreed that we, too, wanted children. It's been five years since the surgery, and she is still distraught over the issue.

Since she and I want to have kids anyway, I suggested to her that we approach her brother for some sperm and I use that to have our baby. I know he'll find it a little creepy, but their parents will be completely in support of it. That's the least of my worries.

He's a Mormon and a homophobe. If he does agree to provide his sperm, I'm worried that I might have a custody battle on my hands once the child is born.

I know this isn't exactly a sexual issue, but do you have any advice?

Answer

Wow, Sabrina, this seems like a total no-brainer to me, but let me spell it out for you. When it comes to life-altering personal decisions, do not request the participation of people who have chosen (and let's be clear that this is a choice) to pursue beliefs that endorse misogyny and homophobia.

Your girlfriend's brother may not just find the request for some of his baby batter "creepy." In fact, his Church holds ambivalent views on as sisted reproduction generally and openly opposes any involvement in non-traditional families.

Mormons have also, since the 90s, been highly active in opposing gay marriage. They played a critical role organizing and fundraising for the recently overturned Proposition 8, where despite the fact that they make up only 2 per cent of California's population, they reportedly made more than 50 per cent of the individual donations to uphold this anti-gay Constitutional amendment. What if you and your babe decide to get hitched? There's just another reason for him to do something irrational.

Seriously, why would you even consider as an option the sperm of an unpredictable homo-hater, someone who will also be at least peripherally involved in your child's life for an indefinite period of time? And what does it matter if your girlfriend's parents would be supportive of this decision? If so, why not use her father's sperm if it's still viable? If family connection is imperative but you're disturbed by the whole Chinatown "She's my daughter and my sister" aspect, look further afield to willing cousins and so on. In my opinion, you're asking for big trouble going to the bro.

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